1. Forgive yourself
It’s very easy for us to blame ourselves for the little things, but where does it get us? Nowhere except in a miserable pit. Whatever you keep blaming yourself for, 2016 is the year to let it go.
2. Stop “dieting”
Been yo-yo dieting for years? Quit while you’re ahead. A lot of us want to be fit and healthy, but starving yourself one day and binge eating the next is NOT healthy. Practice mindful eating and set a 2016 resolution to live a healthy lifestyle, not to stick to a diet.
3. Practice positive self-talk
Beating yourself up all the time can prevent you from reaching your goals. If you look in the mirror and don’t like the way you look in a dress, instead of saying “I look fat in this dress,” say, “I look good, but I know I’ll look better in another dress.”
4. Stop throwing away your money
People say a girl can’t survive without Starbucks; but the cost of an expensive daily drink can add up. Think about what you could do with that extra $4 (that’s $28/week). Go through your expenses — what do you absolutely need and what is totally unnecessary?
5. Take a technology/social media vacation
Social media is consuming our lives more and more and it’s so hard to get away from. If you are on more than 10 social media applications, cut that in half. Try to stick to only the necessities to stay in touch with your friends and family.
6. Purge your closet
I know, it’s really hard to get rid of your favorite shirt from 8th grade, but it doesn’t fit your body or your wardrobe anymore. Take everything out of your closet and make three piles: Things you wear all the time, things you haven’t worn in the past few months and things you haven’t worn in over a year. Get rid of everything in group 3, and then question whether or not you really like everything in group 2. If you feel guilty about throwing away old clothes, you can always donate them to Goodwill or try to sell them at a consignment store.
7. Purge all your stuff pre-college
Your Perry the Platypus stuffed animal is such a good reminder of that time you went to Disney World in 2009, but it’s 2016 now and guess what, you’re an adult. It’s time to let go of the past. Make a pile of all the pre-teen & childhood things you have. Of that pile, pick 5 items to keep that mean a lot to you, and donate the rest to children who can really enjoy your toys.
8. Surround yourself with good people
Keeping up with people who create negative energy is very draining. Find those few good, positive people who have a lot in common with you, and get rid of the rest – I promise this will change your life.
9. Get good sleep
If pulling all-nighters is a necessity to you, there is a lot you need to reevaluate. If your body is telling you to hit the hay early, listen to it! You won’t regret it when you have plenty of energy when you wake up.
10. Make exercise fun
Exercise is important for physical and mental health, but it can put you in a funk if you don’t like exercising. Experiment with different types of exercising such as yoga, recreational sports, rock climbing, pilates, swimming, dancing, gymnastics, cross training, running, spinning, etc. There are so many different ways to be active—and exercising is so much easier when it’s fun.
11. Focus on what’s important
Are you following a career path you don’t like? Are you spending tons of money on things you don’t use? If there is anything you are doing in life that is preventing you from reaching your dreams and aspirations, cut it out! And if you don’t have dreams or aspirations, cut all the nonsense out so you can discover what is important to you.
12. Stop trying to please people
Pleasing people all the time is exhausting, but truth is, people won’t like you any less if you don’t try to please them. Saying “no” to someone won’t make them hate you—they will understand why you’re saying no if you’re honest. Don’t exhaust yourself—you’ll be so much happier and find such better friends when you’re true to yourself.
13. Put yourself first
In college and high school, it’s so easy to always want to impress our friends and basically be slaves to them, but sometimes we need a break. It’s okay to put yourself first sometimes and do what you need to do.
14. Stop bad-talking other people… especially people you don’t even know
Think that girl over there is ugly? Or don’t like someone else’s shoes? Does putting down other people actually make you feel better about yourself? The answer is probably not. How would you feel if someone was always judging you? Keeping an open mind and getting to know people around you who are different can change your life for the better.
15. Stop signing up for things you can’t commit to
I know you want to do it all, but it’s OKAY not to.
16. Start saving your money
In the next few years you will be regretting all that money you spent on booze, weed, and lattes as you’ll need money for things that will benefit your life-long happiness. Start. Saving. Now.
17. Appreciate your family
As a young adult, it’s really easy to hold a grudge against family members, because we take advantage of the fact that we know they will always be there no matter what. Now is an important time in your life to build bonds with your family so that you will have a great relationship with them when you are on your own—don’t throw it away.
18. Eat healthy.
We hear this one all the time, but you will never understand how important it is to eat healthy as a young adult until you are an old adult and suffering from age-related diseases. Make sure you are eating a generally well-balanced diet with fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and plenty of water to stay in good health. A cookie here and there doesn’t hurt, but prioritize healthy foods first!
19. Stop apologizing
Do you say “sorry” for just about everything you do? 2016 is the year to get rid of that habit. You don’t have to say “sorry” for doing something you’re supposed to do, or for crying to your friend about your boyfriend breaking up with you. Start thanking people for interacting with you, or for being a shoulder to cry on. There is no reason to be sorry for simply existing.
20. Stop Making Excuses
And this is probably the most important. Now that you are a young adult you have responsibilities, and as you get older you will only have more. If you constantly find yourself making excuses like “I didn’t have time” or “I forgot,” re-evaluate your priorities and obligations.